The Demo Car Club of Australia
 

The Fiat Abarth 124 Spider

The Fiat 124 Spider is a front engine, rear drive two passenger roadster debuted by FCA at the 2015 LA Auto Show for model year 2016.

Largely based on the fourth generation Mazda MX-5 roadster, and manufactured alongside it at Mazda's Hiroshima plant, the 124 shares its platform, mechanicals, interior and top mechanism with the MX-5, while featuring a Fiat engineered and manufactured turbocharged Multiair engine, shocks, unique exterior styling and slightly increased length and cargo capacity over the MX-5.

The 124 nameplate and exterior styling details recall the Pininfarina designed Fiat 124 Sport Spider, produced from 1966 to 1985.

In May 2012, Mazda and Alfa Romeo - at the time a subsidiary of the Fiat group, now Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) - announced a joint venture to manufacture a common rear drive platform with "both Mazda and (Alfa) to develop two differentiated, distinctly styled, iconic and brand specific, lightweight roadsters featuring rear wheel drive" with the two variants offering proprietary engines unique to each brand.

In December 2014, FCA's Sergio Marchionne determined Alfa Romeos would only be manufactured in Italy,[10] saying "some things belong to a place. Alfa belongs to Italy," adding "I remain committed to that architecture, with our powertrain. I'm not sure it will be with Alfa. But it will be with one of our brands."

At the time, Alfa Romeos were manufactured only in Italy, while Fiats were manufactured in Italy, but also globally - from Tychy, Poland, to Toluca, Mexico.

With their prior agreement in place - for FCA to market a roadster based on the MX-5 to be manufactured by Mazda at its Hiroshima factory - FCA conceived of marketing a Fiat-badged variant in lieu of the Alfa Romeo variant.

In August 2016, FCA formally announced the Fiat 124 Spider based on the Mazda ND platform.

In December 2016, the Detroit News stated "in partnering with Mazda's MX-5 Miata to resurrect the classic Fiat 124 Spider, Fiat Chrysler not only gained a halo sports car for its struggling Italian brand, but likely saved the most celebrated small sports car of the past 25 years (the MX-5)" - citing the markedly increased cost of developing a new car at the time[14] and "the costliest wave of government regulation since the 1970s.

The Demo Car Club of Australia
PO Box 186, Forest Hill VIC 3131
Phone 0429 205 306
Email andrew@mycco.com.au
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